Now Is the Time to Press Even Harder for Immigration Reform


Originally published in Entrepreneur

By Matt McCooe

Late last year, I attended Pitchfest in New Haven where some of Yale University’s most innovative life science faculty competed for startup grant money from the Blavatnik Fund. It was a day spent packed into a ballroom and it was electrifying.

One by one, members of Yale’s rock star faculty got up and gave eight-minute descriptions of their mind-bending breakthroughs that could eventually save lives.  As I watched, something struck me — their accents. Close to half were foreign-born. They were immigrants.

That shouldn’t be that all that surprising. Studies have found that nearly half of the founders or co-founders of Fortune 500 corporations are immigrants or the children of immigrants, and last year 51 percent of domestic private companies valued at $1 billion or more — unicorns — had at least one immigrant founder. These companies employ millions.

Read the full article at

Matt McCooe is CEO of Connecticut Innovations.